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Impact of nanoparticle-support interactions in Co3O4/Al2O3 catalysts for the preferential oxidation of carbon monoxide

Nyathi, Thulani M., Fischer, Nico, York, Andrew P. E., Morgan, David J. ORCID:, Hutchings, Graham J. ORCID:, Gibson, Emma K., Wells, Peter P., Catlow, C. Richard A. ORCID: and Claeys, Michael 2019. Impact of nanoparticle-support interactions in Co3O4/Al2O3 catalysts for the preferential oxidation of carbon monoxide. ACS Catalysis 9 (8) , pp. 7166-7178. 10.1021/acscatal.9b00685

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Different supporting procedures were followed to alter the nanoparticle–support interactions (NPSI) in two Co3O4/Al2O3 catalysts, prepared using the reverse micelle technique. The catalysts were tested in the dry preferential oxidation of carbon monoxide (CO-PrOx) while their phase stability was monitored using four complementary in situ techniques, viz., magnet-based characterization, PXRD, and combined XAS/DRIFTS, as well as quasi in situ XPS, respectively. The catalyst with weak NPSI achieved higher CO2 yields and selectivities at temperatures below 225 °C compared to the sample with strong NPSI. However, relatively high degrees of reduction of Co3O4 to metallic Co were reached between 250 and 350 °C for the same catalyst. The presence of metallic Co led to the undesired formation of CH4, reaching a yield of over 90% above 300 °C. The catalyst with strong NPSI formed very low amounts of metallic Co (less than 1%) and CH4 (yield of up to 20%) even at 350 °C. When the temperature was decreased from 350 to 50 °C under the reaction gas, both catalysts were slightly reoxidized and gradually regained their CO oxidation activity, while the formation of CH4 diminished. The present study shows a strong relationship between catalyst performance (i.e., activity and selectivity) and phase stability, both of which are affected by the strength of the NPSI. When using a metal oxide as the active CO-PrOx catalyst, it is important for it to have significant reduction resistance to avoid the formation of undesired products, e.g., CH4. However, the metal oxide should also be reducible (especially on the surface) to allow for a complete conversion of CO to CO2 via the Mars–van Krevelen mechanism.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Chemistry
Cardiff Catalysis Institute (CCI)
Publisher: American Chemical Society
ISSN: 2155-5435
Funders: EPSRC, Johnson Matthey, Royal Society
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 July 2019
Date of Acceptance: 28 June 2019
Last Modified: 05 May 2023 01:47

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